About the PURE Knowledge Exchange Network

Probability, Uncertainty and Risk in the Environment (PURE) is a research initiative funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) to increase the impact of NERC natural hazards (NH) research and to take a national leadership role in changing the way in which uncertainty and risk are assessed and quantified across the natural hazards community.

PURE has two elements, the PURE programme (the research programme) and the PURE network (the research and knowledge exchange network), which work together to achieve two high-level goals:

 (i) to improve the assessment and quantification of uncertainty and risk in NH by developing new methods and demonstrating their applicability; and

(ii) to stimulate good practice guidance and standardisation of the assessment and quantification of uncertainty and risk across the NH community.

The PURE programme will address the first high-level goal, while the PURE network will address the second high-level goal. The PURE network will also provide a vehicle for interaction with a wider business community to ensure that the research conducted by the PURE programme is

a) relevant to business;

b) disseminated to end-users within the UK and internationally; and

c) makes use of relevant research in other areas of mathematics and other sectors of industry.

In July 2012, the NERC announced that £4m has been awarded for the PURE programme, which will be managed by two consortia of academic institutions and industrial partners to undertake PURE-related studies of priority hazards, including modelling of floods, windstorms, earthquakes, tsunamis, droughts, lahars and volcanic ash dispersal.  It is planned that the PURE programme will continue until 2016 at least.

The academic organisations comprising the two consortia include University College London, Durham University, University of Edinburgh, Birkbeck College, Imperial College London, NERC British Geological Survey, University of Reading, University of Oxford, University of Bristol, University of Exeter, Lancaster University, OGS (Trieste), ISPRA (Rome), DPRI (Kyoto), TU Delft (Netherlands), Penn State University (USA), and the Technion (Israel).

The industrial and public sector organisations supporting PURE programme include Aon Benfield, Arup, Axis Capital, Catlin,  Eurotempest, German Centre for Geosciences, JBA Consulting, JRC-IPSC, Hiscox, HR Wallingford, Los Alamos National Laboratory, NAREC Capital, Met Office, DEFRA, Environment Agency, Lighthill Risk Network, RMS, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute, Thames Water, and Willis Re.

For more details regarding the ongoing research and industrial partcipation, visit the Research Consortia pages by clicking here.